If every American actually tried to follow every single federal regulation, 76% of voters believe they would spend all their time with paperwork and nothing would get done. A ScottRasmussen.com survey found that just 24% disagree (see question wording and crosstab results).
That may be why, if a regulation requires a business to act in a way that is not in the best interest of their customers, just 29% believe the company should obey the regulation.
Americans have decidedly mixed views on federal regulations. Fifty-nine percent (59%) believe that, to protect consumers, federal regulators should be given more power to oversee the practices of large corporations. But, rather than protecting consumers, 75% believe federal regulations often needlessly raise prices for consumers.
The survey also found that 76% agree with a quote from the sociologist Robert Nisbet: “Bureaucrats only tolerate their own processes, and they are inwardly driven to expand them into every corner of social life.” Nisbet wrote that in “The Quest for Community,” a book New York Times columnist Ross Douthat said might be “the 20th century’s most important work of conservative sociology.”
Nisbet described bureaucrats as “secular missionaries with their own handbook for redemption.” Scott Rasmussen’s latest book notes that this missionary zeal “pushes politics and government into a larger role in our daily lives.” It is a major reason for the political polarization in America today. “Partisanship doesn’t matter so much when the formal government is a distant abstraction and we are generally free to live our lives as we see fit. It matters a lot when the change of government from one party to the other impacts our day-to-day life. It matters even more when nothing can be done to prevent the bureaucrats from imposing their own handbook for redemption.”
We also provide daily updates on the president’s job approval and the generic congressional ballot. It’s all part of our mission to enhance the public dialogue through data-driven analysis that explores the underlying currents of public opinion (read About Us).
The national survey of 1,001 Registered Voters was conducted January 15-16, 2019 by ScottRasmussen.com and HarrisX, a polling company specializing in online surveys (see Methodology). It has a 3.1 percentage point Margin of Error with a 95% level of confidence.
Neither Scott Rasmussen nor ScottRasmussen.com has any relationship with Rasmussen Reports® (see About Us).